Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Recipes: Haunted Halloween

Fire up your cauldron and get out your broom! Bubble bubble, toil and trouble, get ready for Halloween on the double! You don’t need a magic spell to make your home the best haunt in town, just follow these decadent decorating tips and ghastly menu.

Decadent Decorations:
Place a branch in your chandelier, stretch fake spider webs over it, top with black plastic spider. This is a must for a spooky dinner party.
Use the fake spider web to get that special “haunted house” feel. Drape on pictures, mirrors and doorways. Face it, who doesn’t get creeped out by a house full of cobwebs?
Take a 4 foot tall dead branch and shove it into a flower pot filled with dirt to stabilize. Decorate it with orange lights, spider webs, tissue paper ghosts and plastic spiders. You can use Christmas ornament hooks to hang snack size candy bars on the tree. Try two of these placed on each side of your front door to mark your house for tricker-treaters.

Ghoulish Menu

Yummy Mummy Calzone Melanie Knight inspired by Taste of Home
1 13.8 ounce can refrigerated pizza dough
1-1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup pizza sauce
50 slices pepperoni
1/2 cup black olives (save a couple for the eyes)
optional- bacon, ham, crumbled sausage, bell peppers
1 egg, beaten

Roll out the dough into a rounded triangle shape (think slice of pizza shape), about 14-in. high x 11-in. wide at the base of the triangle. Place each on a baking sheet with the tip of the triangle toward you. Lightly score a 4-in.-wide rectangle in the center of the triangle 2 in. from the top and bottom. On each long side, cut 1-in.-wide strips at an angle up to the score line, leaving a triangle in the top center of the wide end for the head.

Inside the scored rectangle in the center, layer cheese, pizza sauce, pepperoni and black olives. Add optional ingredients at this time. Shape the top center triangle into a head. Starting at the feet, fold alternating strips of dough at an angle across filling, stopping at the last strip on each side.

Brush dough with egg. For eyes, press 1/2 olive slice for each closed eye. Bake at 350 ° for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand for 5 minutes before slicing.
Makes 4 servings.

Shrunken Head Punch Melanie Knight inspired by Martha Stewart
4-6 Granny Smith apples
1 gallon apple cider
1-2 liter ginger ale
8-12 whole cloves for eyes

Peel the apples. Carve eyes and a frowning mouth. Push a clove in for each eye. Mix punch in equal parts apple cider and ginger ale. Let shrunken heads float in punch. Serves

Lady Fingers Melanie Knight inspired by Martha Stewart
3-5 drops red food coloring
1-zip lock bag
16 whole almonds
1-8 ounce can crescent rolls

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place almonds and food coloring in a zip lock bag. Shake to coat almonds completely. Set aside.

Unroll crescents and separate into 4 rectangles (follow precut perforations). Press triangle perforations back together Cut each rectangle into 4 short strips (16 total). Take each strip into your hand and squeeze gently to create “knuckles”. Place on cookie sheet 1 inch apart. Position almond nails on 1 end of each finger and push into dough to attach.
Bake until lightly browned, about 12 minutes. Cool completely.
Makes 16 lady fingers.

Graveyard Cupcakes Melanie Knight inspired by http://www.pillsbury/.com
1container (16 oz) vanilla frosting
5-10 drops green food color
24 unfrosted cupcakes
1 tube (0.68 oz) black decorating gel (not food color)
24 lady finger cookies
10 Oreo cookies, remove the white stuffing and crumble the chocolate cookies

Place frosting in small bowl and mix well with green food color. Frost cupcakes. Write “RIP” on 1 end of each cookie with the decorating gel. Press other end of cookies into cupcakes to form "gravestones." Sprinkle cookie crumbs around each "gravestone".
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